North Pole Middle School

Principal's Update - February 22, 2021

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Personal Health Check Each Day

As part of your daily routine please check with your student each morning regarding how they are feeling. If students are exhibiting COVID like symptoms please keep them home. In the event that your student exhibits COVID like symptoms here at school your student will be assessed by our school nurse who will then make the decision on whether or not your student can continue their day at school or if we need a parent/guardian to pick them up. Staff will also be expected to follow this daily protocol regarding self-assessment for their health.
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Hello Parents and Families:

I hope this email finds you well. Things at North Pole Middle School continue to move along smoothly. Students and staff have both found a rhythm to their day and we continue to welcome new kids back to the building almost daily.

We’re excited to be able to offer school pictures to students this spring. Your student was given a picture packet on Thursday, if they haven’t shown it to you, please ask to see it. Extra packets here at the school if you need us to send one home with your student. Any student that is in remote learning or e-Learning will have the opportunity to come to the school on March 3rd from 2 – 5:30 p.m. to have their photo taken as well. Please come in through the front doors, turn to the right and head to the auditorium just beyond the cafeteria, picture packets will be available at the door.

The State is currently requiring schools to participate in and plan for standardized testing. The Performance Evaluation for Alaska Schools (PEAKS) is scheduled to take place in April. North Pole Middle School will be planning for ALL students to participate in the assessment in person. Any student who is in the Remote Learning or E-Learning setting are expected to participate in testing physically at North Pole Middle School. Look for more information to come in March as this plan develops.

There are two more weeks remaining in the third quarter. The quarter will officially conclude on March 5 with Spring Break beginning the week of March 7th, look for report cards to arrive the week of March 21st. The fourth quarter begins March 15th and then it’s seems like a sprint to the last day of school on May 18th.

We would like to express our thanks once again for doing your part as a family to send your students to school healthy. We completely recognize the challenge it creates when your student has to stay home when feeling ill as we face the same challenge as faculty. I am not only impressed by but very thankful for how everyone is working together to keep North Pole Middle School open and functioning as “normal” as possible. The kids really are doing a great job, please relay our gratitude to them.

As always, if there are any questions you have please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.


Richard Smith, Principal


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Picture Day Is Coming!

Packets were sent home with students on Thursday, February 18th.

**eLearners & Remote Learning Students**

Photos on March 3rd 2-5:30 p.m.

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Picture Day Schedule

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Parent Volunteers - Picture Day

We are looking for 2 parent volunteers. 1 parent for each picture day.

Volunteers will get a voucher for $14.99 off a package of their choice if they volunteer for the full picture day.

Please call 907-488-2271 to let us know if you're interested.

Items to Bring to School Daily

  • MASK!
  • Chromebook and charging chord
  • Water bottle, all of our drinking fountains have been turned off but we do have two filling stations available.
  • School supplies, if you have a binder that’s fine, if you just bring pencil and pen for now that’s fine too. We’ll figure what we need as we learn to balance electronics with real life learning.
  • Lunch if you bring lunch from home.

Parents In the Building/Morning Drop Off

As of the week of February 8 we will be allowing parents to access the building’s front office in person to pick up or drop off their student. Previously we have been meeting parents at the front door, checking ID and then sending their student out to them once we’ve retrieved them from their classroom. Now if a parent would like you are welcome to enter all the way to the front office, or just inside the entryway and we will again follow the same process. We will check your ID, retrieve your student and send you on your way. If you need to pick your student up early from school here is the process we would like you to follow:

Student Pick-Up

  • Call the school ahead of time to let the office know you are picking up your student 488-2271.
  • Sign your student out via the Off Campus pass before leaving the school with your student.

Student Drop Off (after 9:35 a.m.)

  • Call the office and let us know your student is arriving.
  • Let us know during that call if the absence is excused.

ALiCE Training taking place in Advisory classes.

A – Alert

L – Lockdown

I – Inform

C – Counter

E - Evacuate

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Important Note - School Pickup

It is a district policy that we ask for parent/guardian ID when picking up a student from school.This is not intended to be inconvenient but it helps assist us in providing a high degree of student safety.

Bus Deviations

A bus deviation is a request for your student to ride a bus that they aren't registered for and that they don't usually ride.

A few helpful hints on how to request a bus deviation:

  • It MUST be requested in writing via notes, email ( or fax. Students may NOT write their own notes.
  • If you send one by email, you will get a reply saying we received it. If you don’t get a reply please call 488-2271. Please have it turned into the office by 2:00 pm. If you submit an email after 1:00pm, please call to confirm receipt.

-Your request needs to have the following information on it:

  • Your student's name
  • Bus number (route) and the name of the street it stops at
  • How long the deviation is good for(just that day or for the whole school year)
  • Parent's name and contact information
  • Our fax number is:(907)488-9213
  • Email requests to:

Mask Requirements

The district has indicated that masks are required both on the bus and throughout the day in the building. As I mentioned in a previous newsletter the proper wearing of masks is a deal breaker. If students are not wearing their mask the classroom teacher will make several requests for them to do so and educate them on why wearing their mask is important. If the student continues to not wear a mask the student will be referred to the administration and we will follow the same process with the student and notify the family. During that notification administration will be requesting the family's assistance in helping the student comply with the mask requirement. During that call we may or may not discuss other learning options for your student if compliance with wearing the mask is not possible. Our intent is not to punish kids for not wearing masks but to also maintain the safety of the entire building so we can all come to school for as long as possible.
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Please remember that if your student needs to ride a bus to and/or from school that you need to register for the bus through the school district website. Here is the link for that to take place.

When students arrive at the school our plan is to allow two busses to dismiss kids at a time. We will have staff available to help escort student groups in to the building using two separate doorways. Students who are dropped off by parents or families are welcome to use the main entrance. Once in the building students will either go to the cafeteria to get their breakfast or immediately to their first period classroom.

At the end of the day we will be allowing students to use three different front doors to exit the building and dismissing class a few minutes apart to provide some degree of separation.

Breakfast/Lunch Time

Reminder that both breakfast and lunches are free for ALL STUDENTS for the remainder of this school year, no paperwork and no strings attached. If you have traditionally applied for Free/Reduced Lunch benefits we encourage you to still do that as it will get your student set up for the fall of 2021. The link for our Nutrition Services Department is here, and the on-line version of Free/Reduced Lunch program can be found on this page.

When kids arrive in the morning if they need/want breakfast they can simply go to the cafeteria to “purchase” it and then they will go to their first period classroom to eat. Students will still punch in their student number even though they will not be charged. Any “a-la-cart” items that the cafeteria may sell will be sold to students and that money will come out of their lunch account. Information about the cost of items can be found below. This link, will take you to a list of all schools in the district so you can see each schools’ breakfast and lunch menu if you are interested.

The building will have two lunches, A and B. We have divided the building in half so about half of the building will be at lunch at one time. We’ll stagger dismissal times to lunch to help alleviate kids waiting in lines with their peers. Kids will again, “purchase” their lunch and then return to their classroom to eat. After lunch ends each student will wipe down their desk area and discard their trash.

During the lunch period kids will stay in their classroom and be able to remove their masks to eat. Some classrooms have teachers that will be eating with their students and we are thankful for that. Other classrooms will have an adult that circulates between them to help monitor students.

After School Activities

In order to provide students with multiple opportunities to stay involved in school activities, we are hosting the following activities after school in 2-week sessions:

February 18 - March 5

  • Girls' Basketball
  • Coding Club

March 15 - 26

  • 6-7-8 Boys' Volleyball
  • 6th Girls' Volleyball
  • Cookie Making Club
  • Chess Club

March 29 - April 9

  • 7-8 Girls' Volleyball
  • Coding Club

April 12 - 23

  • Boys' Basketball
  • Cupcake Making Club

April 26 - May 12

  • Track & Field
  • 7-8 Girls' Volleyball

The following forms are required to participate in a sports activity:

  • Sports Physical
  • Activity Consent & Emergency Medical Info form
  • Concussion Information form
  • Covid-19 "opt-in" form

The following forms are required for non-sports activity clubs:

  • Activity Consent & Emergency Medical Info form
  • Covid-19 "opt-in" form

District Technology Resources

The district has put together a list of technology resources that may be helpful for parents. As always if you need assistance you can call the school as well and we will do our best to assist you.

Technology Resources for Parents

Misc Dates

March 2-3: Picture Day

March 5: End of 3rd Quarter

March 8-12: Spring Break, No School

March 15: Beginning of 3rd Quarter

April 1: PEAKS Testing